By far the most popular bit of feedback I get about Diver is something along the lines of "This game is @$@# tough!"
As a bit of saving grace, the second most popular bit of feedback I get is "This game is addicting!"
In fact, here is my single favorite piece of feedback I got from one of the forums.
Woah, amazing game..
*plays for about an hour*
ok.. this is either a brilliant game, or the most fucking annoying and frustrating thing on the planet!??
-Greg-Amis (TIG Source Forums)
Diver is not your ordinary casual web game. I knew this about 4 hrs into the initial alpha release several months ago.
Diver uses an control technique called interactive dynamics. The position of the mouse on the screen maps directly to a target angle for each of the various joints on Diver. The joints then try to satisfy the target angle by applying a certain limited amount of torque. (think of this as the muscle for the joints)
Never in the game do you ever directly control Diver's overall movement. You simply control Diver's joints using mouse movements, this in-turn apply's forces and impulses to the rest of the world, (cliff, diving board etc..) and the rest is a combination of skill and luck.
Diver is my first (finished) game. I did all I could to make the game easier to play but I didn't want to compromise the control scheme.
In the end Diver turned out slightly more difficult than I would have liked. (The original plan was to have levels with 3 or 4 or more diving boards that you would need to bounce across to reach the buoys.)
Never the less, I'm happy with the final product and look forward to moving on to my 2nd game.
For an idea of the feedback I've been getting, here are some direct quotes from various forums accoss the net.
Best horrible death simulator I played so far
-kYn (Face Punch Studios Forum)
Lol i'm just flapping around like a fish on land
-curtisford16 (Face Punch Studios Forum)
Very hard, but extremely addicting.
-Frank_West (Face Punch Studios Forum)
Thanks man, this is a damn fun game.
-lettuce_head (Face Punch Studios Forum)
Holy crack! This is so cool!
Wait - did I just see ragdollphysics? Very nice. This made my day!
-Wrestler#1 (Fun-Motion Forums)
This game is extremly hard. I was stuck on the second trampoline level for like 2-3 hours.
-Nintendo-Guy (Fun-Motion Forums)
i love this damn game !!!!! amazing great job man ... i love it but its so hard ! but thats what makes it better
-samysam (Fun-Motion Forums)
A nice game, with some good physics overall.
The difficulty level is very high though, and I found myself wanting to spin the mouse around quickly to spin him faster - so a mindset shift was needed to try and utilise the control system you've adopted.
I just hope that doesn't put people off; sometimes if the learning curve is too steep, people just give up and try the next thing.
-Red27 (Indiegamer Developer Forums)
Thanks to all who have played or are still playing the game and thanks to all who provided feedback.